Greenhouse Governance: Addressing Climate Change in America

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Public deliberation over climate change has traditionally been dominated by the natural and physical sciences. Is the planet warming? To what degree, and is mankind responsible? How big a problem is this, really? But concurrent with these debates is the question of what should be done. Indeed, what can be done? Issues of governance, including the political feasibility of certain policies and their capacity for implementation, have received short shrift in the conversation. But they absolutely must be addressed as we respond to this unprecedented challenge. Greenhouse Governance brings a much-needed public policy mindset to discussion of climate change in America.

Greenhouse Governance features a number of America's preeminent public policy scholars, examining some aspect of governance and climate change. They analyze the state and influence of American public opinion on climate change as well as federalism and intergovernmental relations, which prove especially important since state and local governments have taken a more active role than originally expected. Specific policy issues examined include renewable electricity standards, mandating greater vehicle fuel economy, the "adaptation vs. mitigation" debate, emissions trading, and carbon taxes.

The contributors do consider the scientific and economic questions of climate policy but place special emphasis on political and managerial issues. They analyze the role of key American government institutions including the courts, Congress, and regulatory agencies. The final two chapters put the discussion into an international context, looking at climate governance challenges in North America, relations with the European Union, and possible models for international governance.

Contributors include Christopher Borick, Muhlenberg College; Martha Derthick,
University of Virginia; Kirsten Engel, University of Arizona; Marc Landy, Boston
College; Pietro Nivola, Brookings Institution; Paul Posner, George Mason
University; Leigh Raymond, Purdue University; Walter Rosenbaum, University of
Florida; Ian Rowlands, University of Waterloo; Henrik Selin, Boston University;
Stacy VanDeveer, University of New Hampshire

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

" Greenhouse Governance addresses a profound national challenge: the linkage between U.S. climate governance, our national and international policies regarding energy, and our ever-present obligations involving our national security.
Every citizen has a duty to learn about these present and future contingencies;
this book is a valuable resource." —Senator John Warner (R-Va., retired)

"With international climate negotiations at an impasse, the responsibility to address climate change continues to fall to national, state, and local governments, many of which have demonstrated tremendous leadership and creativity. This timely volume brings together prominent experts to examine policy experience to date,
both within the United States and beyond its borders. The result is invaluable insight into climate governance that works, as well as pitfalls to be avoided by
U.S. policymakers." —Kathryn Harrison, University of British Columbia

"Climate change is one of the most complex and intensely debated issues of our day.
Recognizing a need for comprehensive interdisciplinary analysis, the Miller Center of Public Affairs convened top scholars from political science, law, and history for the national conference which led to the publication of Greenhouse Governance. I know of no other treatment of the subject that more thoroughly or practically presents the big-picture implications of climate change governance concerns and the strategies for addressing them" —Gerald L. Baliles, former Governor, Commonwealth of Virginia

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780815703310
  • Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
  • Publication date: 8/16/2010
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 382
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Barry G. Rabe is professor of public policy at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy and professor of the environment in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts at the University of Michigan. He is also a nonresident scholar in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution and a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration.

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Table of Contents



1 Introduction: The Challenges of U.S. Climate Governance Barry G. Rabe Rabe, Barry G. 3

2 American Public Opinion and Climate Change Christopher P. Borick Borick, Christopher P. 24

3 Compensatory Federalism Martha Derthick Derthick, Martha 58

4 The Politics of Vertical Diffusion: The States and Climate Change Paul L. Posner Posner, Paul L. 73


5 The Emerging Revolution in Emissions Trading Policy Leigh Raymond Raymond, Leigh 101

6 The "Impossible Dream" of Carbon Taxes: Is the "Best Answer" a Political Non-Starter? Barry G. Rabe Rabe, Barry G. 126

7 The Long and Winding Road: Automotive Fuel Economy and American Politics Pietro S. Nivola Nivola, Pietro S. 158

8 Encouraging Renewable Electricity to Promote Climate Change Mitigation Ian H. Rowlands Rowlands, Ian H. 181

9 Adapting to Climate Change: Problems and Prospects Marc Landy Landy, Marc 204


10 Courts and Climate Policy: Now and in the Future Kirsten H. Engel Engel, Kirsten H. 229

11 Can Congress Govern the Climate? Barry G. Rabe Rabe, Barry G. 260

12 Greenhouse Regulation: How Capable Is EPA? Walter Rosenbaum Rosenbaum, Walter 286


13 Re-engaging International Climate Governance: Challenges and Opportunities for the United States Henrik Selin Selin, Henrik 313

14 Multilevel Governance and Transatlantic Climate Change Politics Stacy D. Van Deveer Van Deveer, Stacy D. 336

Conclusion Barry G. Rabe Rabe, Barry G. 353

Contributors 367

Index 369

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